Boston Teacher Leadership Summit

Personal, not Professional, Development for Teachers: Not a Day Off but a Day On.

The demands of an intense school year can leave a teacher constantly playing catch up or succumbing to a "nothing done to full capacity" complacency. However, I have noticed that teachers at conferences or workshops are often times their most productive because they tend do two things - 1) talk about their schools and 2) lesson plan. Both are vital to the development of the teacher in that they allow him/her to share ideas, relate to others, give feedback, and support one another in situations or circumstances in the classroom and/or whole school. Often times teachers are thankful of a time to simply "get things done" that they were behind in completing and leave feeling refreshed and rejuvenated, even if for a day. As an educator, I have found that some of my greatest ideas and inspiration come from these "informal" moments and I propose that they occur more often and formally.

 

I propose that once a month, 1 teacher per school in a district or network, instead of reporting to the classroom, all report to a public space (i.e. school library, PD Room) for the day to lesson plan, share ideas and be productive. Viewing it as a Day on, not a day off, a facilitator coordinates staff into groupings based on common interest of work and guide initial introductory activities. From there, the space becomes a "think tank" for teachers to get things done.

 

A substitute fills in the classroom or the students' schedules are altered to not have that class for the day.

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Idea No. 322